Sunday, March 7, 2010

The trip to India was a wonderful experience for me. It took us over 15 hours to get there, but once there it was all worth it. The hotel that we stayed at was very nice with very tight security. One of the things I noticed right away was the entire run down areas and poverty stricken places. You would see a nice building on one side with a rundown building on the other side. I can’t imagine what it would be like to grow up in those conditions; it really makes you appreciate the things that you have. One of the main differences I noticed while visiting was how they drive in India, there are no lanes to drive in, and it’s just a free for all they do not even care if their cars get banged up. When we were on our way to the hotel from the airport we saw a taxi flipped over on its side. No wonder the host families we stayed in had their own personal drivers.
While visiting Mumbai I learned a great deal about other people’s cultures, different technology and different ways of thinking. One of the things I enjoyed the most was living with my host family. I was able to realize that halfway around the world teenagers are not so different after all. They dress the same, socialize in the same ways, hangout with friends and listen to the same music just as we would in America. It was really interesting to see how they live and interact as a family as well. They have live in servants, chefs and drivers. I only saw Ishan’s Mom one time while we were visiting; the servants do everything for their families. This was very different than my family. The food that we ate while visiting was very different than what I was used to. Over there many people are vegetarian therefore many of the restaurants would have vegetarian and non-vegetarian meals. At first I will admit I was not that big of a fan of their meals but as the days passed it seemed to grow on me, although I was glad to be home and have some mashed potatoes and red meat.
The conference was one of the high points of the trip. When the conference began I was thinking to myself “wow three days of work this is not going to be much fun”, I was definitely mistaken. It was so cool to meet so many new people from numerous parts of the world. Many people I met shared the same interests as I did, it was really interesting to share favorite songs with them, and they even liked techno. At the conference we split into groups. My group was Hikaru, Jane, and myself. The idea was that each group would come up with various ways to help other people. Our idea was to show how technology could be implemented in the classroom and the advantages it could have if everyone was able to have a laptop. Unfortunately our idea was not selected as one of the top three.
When the conference was over I was excited and sad all at the same time. I had gained so much from this trip and have such wonderful memories. Although it was lots of fun I was happy to be going home to see my family and friends and start my normal life over again.

Thank you Mrs. Betty and Mrs. Vicki for taking me on this trip, it changed my life!

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